Deciding who makes the horological grade

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Britain’s potential next generation of watchmakers will be given the chance to prove themselves as the British School of Watch Making holds its annual assessment day next month.

Those wanting one of just eight coveted places on the Manchester school’s two year full-time, WOSTEP 3200 hour course beginning in September will have a day to prove their drive and commitment to course lecturers.

The all-day evaluation takes place on April 24 and covers three elements including an eye-to-hand co-ordination test of striping a watch following instruction, a written test involving logic and maths as well as a five to 10 minute presentation to the board on why the student wants to become a watchmaker.

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The course, affiliated with the world-renowned Watches of Switzerland Training and Educational Program (WOSTEP), will create a new generation of the UK’s most skilled watchmakers after training in micro-mechanics, the repair of modern Swiss mechanical, automatic, electronic and chronograph watches as well as the manufacturing on hand tools.

Students will also learn how to make a WOSTEP school watch from a blank movement as well as take part in factory visits and work experience placements within the Swiss watch industry.

Mark Hearn, director at the school and managing director of Patek Philippe, one of the school’s founding partners, said: “Today, watchmaking is experiencing a huge revival, it used to have a fustiness about it but it has become attractive to youngsters and not only are the well-qualified graduates guaranteed a job for life, it also pays very well.”

The school is an independent institute, founded in 2004 by watch houses Breitling, Patek Philippe, Richemont Group, Rolex and Swatch Group and retailers Aurum, Houlden Group, MW Group, Signet Group and FA Buck. It is funded by its founders and supporters. Applicants should contact the BSoW directly through its website.

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